Polarbackup Cloud Storage Review – Is it Any Good?

Polarbackup review graphic

In this Polarbackup review, I’m going to talk about my experience with this cloud storage solution and by the end you’ll be able to decide if this is the right tool to backup your files.

There are so many options when it comes to backing up your computer files that it’s hard to know which one to choose.

It’s important though, to choose a storage solution that does a few things:

  • store your files securely with encryption
  • allow you to restore your files when you need them
  • provide unlimited backup of all the folders you specify
  • allow you to automatically upload your files (set and forget)
  • support for all file and photo types

Polarbackup is one company offering backups with a very attractive offer of $4/month paid annually.

They also offer a free 15 day trial to test out their service so you can try them if you haven’t quite decided which solution you want to go with.

But is Polarbackup the right cloud storage solution to go with? Is it any good?

I took the trial and after testing decided to do this Polarbackup review. Read on to see what I found.


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What is Polarbackup?

Polarbackup is an online cloud backup solution which started operations in October 2019 (which isn’t too long ago).

They feature unlimited storage capacity using AWS technology for a very low annual fee. You can set and forget your backups and your files are stored forever as long as you subscribe to the service or decide to delete your data.

What they actually offer though is cold storage which means that you won’t be able to instantly restore your files when you need them. You’ll have to wait a little more than 3 hours to get your files. I guess this is the reason for their brand name.

Polarbackup offers all this for just $48 per year or $4/month billed annually as their pricing states.

They offer a 15 day trial with no credit card required for you to get started.

Optionally, you could purchase a subscription immediately but you’ll have to read on to see why you should always give the free trial your first choice.


Signing Up For Polarbackup

Polarbackup offers a free trial which I took for the purpose of adding them to the list of sites offering cloud storage.

During the sign up, I noticed some weird stuff which basically set off some red flags.

It’s actually pretty easy to sign up for Polarbackup’s free trial. After clicking on the free trial button option on the homepage, you give your name, email address and choose a password and you’re in your dashboard in no time.

One of the first things I noticed when I got to the dashboard is that there’s an offer for PolarPrivacy, another offering from Polarbackup, prominently displayed on the dashboard.

Polarbackup dashboard

What isn’t so obvious is how you’re supposed to start backing up your files.

The small “Download Polarbackup” button isn’t given as much attention being pushed off to the right side of the screen almost as an afterthought.

I could see how much time was left on my trial and when it expired. There are some other cards on the screen also but no instructions.

I thought that this was weird but it was there so this must be the first step to getting started so it was just a minor issue to me at this point.


Downloading & Installing Polarbackup

Downloading Polarbackup’s .exe file was a breeze but installing it wasn’t without a few hiccups.

Windows 10 will throw up a warning that the file might be harmful but knowing that my download comes from a legitimate source, I clicked on “Run anyway” to continue.

The installation for some reason stopped midway with an error and I had to start all over again.

This started to worry me just a little but I ended up getting the app installed.

Logging in was my next step as the application showed the following screen.

Polarbackup login screen

I was logged into my dashboard while doing this but since this was the application, I had to get my login details to sign in.

This was as far as I got in the process of testing Polarbackup because this is where I got some problems that prompted me to do some further research into this product.

Usually, I don’t remember my passwords because they’re created and stored by a password app, Dashlane in my case.

So I fetched my login details and entered them into the app and clicked “Sign in”.

Immediately, an error message showed up saying that my login credentials were wrong. I double checked and added them again resulting in the same error as before.

Confused, I decided to recover my password. I click on “Forget Password?” and now instead of redirecting me to a page on Polarbackup, I’m sent to a page on Zoolz.com.

Zoolz password recovery

Now this is poor user experience because aside from an id in the address bar, there is nothing that tells you that this is a part of Polarbackup.

Zoolz is another cloud storage and backup website which I later found out owns Polarbackup or they have the same owner.

Inputting my email address to reset my password gives me the following:

No Zoolz account

Obviously, because I do not have a Zoolz account. Therefor, I could not reset my Polarbackup account to even try backing up my files.

At this point, even if I could log in, I don’t think I could trust Polarbackup with my data so it was pointless for me to even try.

I did try resetting my password from Polarbackup’s login page in the browser which redirected me to the right page on their domain but I still encountered the same login problems as before. This threatened to send me in an endless loop of resetting my password and trying to login.


Is Polarbackup Any Good Though?

But what if Polarbackup is a really good cloud storage solution that would back up your files securely and I am just missing out?

I decided to go do some research and this research is what my Polarbackup review is based on.

I found a review by a big tech site that gave Polarbackup a favorable review.

Techradar does reviews on a lot of stuff like this and they basically said that as long as you know that you’re signing up for cold storage and know what to expect then this will probably work for you.

Most of the other reviews that were not given by a professional reviewer though were not so forgiving.

These reviews were from regular users who signed up for Polarbackup’s service, a lot of them for a lifetime deal where Polarbackup was giving 1-5 TB of storage for a flat fee instead of a subscription.

Here are some of the things they’re saying about Polarbackup:

Be careful of the plan you choose. If you’re on a basic lifetime plan and you format your computer, PolarBackup will treat your formatted computer like a new device and not allow you to download your files as you can only have one computer per account. If you want your files then you have to upgrade to a yearly subscription. This is not transparent. The biggest benefit of a cloud solution is that your files are saved and that you can restore them if something happens to your computer. You cannot do this with the basic lifetime plan offered by PolarBackup.

Stuart Robinson (Trustpilot user)

Personally, I found Polarbackup the most terrible, troublesome service I ever purchased. First of all, it stops working pretty fast! It USES TOO MUCH CPU and RAM BUT does NOT backup anything! According to my experience, Polarbackup support is terrible. It is very close to NO SUPPORT.

I contact Polarbackup to solve my problem but Polarbackup support was unable to solve my problem! After wasting my time for about one week, finally they asked to connected to my PC with Anydesk. However, they cancelled the time I was booked just 3 hour after their email and told me they are busy!

I complained for refund and finally they find a time to do their responsibilities! Someone connected to me and solved it, but it was temporary…

Moreover, support is very unclear. When I asked about what they did and how they fixed Polarbackup not working problem, they did not answer me! The support just told contact us if it stopped working again! It stopped several hours later and I reported to support. Guess what? Polarbackup provides me NO SUPPRT even by now! NO ANSWER at all!

Anonymous reviewer on Trustpilot

I made the mistake of buying it two weeks ago.

Where do I start?

– Does not automatically run at startup (unlike Carbonite and OneDrive).

– When manually restarted, it forgets where it left off and has to totally re-analyze what has and hasn’t been backed up yet.

– If left running overnight (PC set to not sleep or shut off hard drive), the amount of RAM it uses creeps up to 6GB of the 8GB installed in the PC, essentially freezing up everything else.

– Zero help files on the website.

– No reply on an email I sent regarding the memory usage issue (noted above) sent a week ago.

I would be banned from the board if I posted the words I’m thinking to describe Polar Backup. For now, all I can do is contact PayPal and open a claim for a refund.

Stay away – you have been warned.

gman86 (Anandtech Forum)

This is just a small selection of the feedback I found on Polarbackup but they give the general consensus on what to expect.

I had my own experience so I think it’s closer to what these users are saying than the favorable reviews given by the professional reviewers from the big tech sites.

Polarbackup does mention on their site that they’ve been featured on a lot of big tech sites but after looking for those mentions, most of them were just about the service’s lifetime deal and less about how Polarbackup worked for them.


Polarbackup Alternatives To Try

Don’t let the reviews stop you. You can try Polarbackup for yourself with their free 15 day trial.

However, there are much more reliable backup solutions offering unlimited cloud storage. These sites have been around for much longer and have good reviews from both users and tech reviewers.

Here are some of the best Polarbackup alternatives to try.

1. BackBlaze

Just like Polarbackup, Backblaze offers a 15 day trial so you can try their service which includes more than just unlimited storage and automatic backups.

The main advantage here is that it is not cold storage and you’ll be able to restore your files instantly.

Your files are also securely stored and encrypted and BackBlaze offers 2-factor authentication to guard against unauthorized use of your account and data.

One other service they offered that was impressive to me is they’ll help you locate a lost or stolen computer if that ever happens.

All of this for prices starting at just $6/month sounds like a great deal to me.

You can try Backblaze here or find out more about their free trial.

2. Carbonite

Polarbackup alternative - Carbonite

Carbonite is one of the leaders in the cloud backup and storage industry. Over 1.1 million customers trust them to store their files and they offer a full 15 day free trial if you want to try their service. Longer trials are available for business backups.

Backups also come with their lightning-fast virus protection to help protect your data when you purchase Prime or Plus plan.

Remote access to your files from any device is also one benefit of using Carbonite besides having the basics – encryption and being able to immediately restore your files from any web browser anywhere.

You can sign up for a Carbonite free 15 day trial here.


Wrap-up

Polarbackup offers a really great deal of backing up your files for just $4/month billed annually but seemingly misses the mark with their service.

Just as my own experience, there are lots of customers who are complaining about their service – everything from the lack of support to the inadequacies of the backup and storage itself.

Cold storage, where it takes hours to get your files restored isn’t exactly appealing but could work if you know what to expect.

I don’t recommend Polarbackup.

There are lot of other great cloud backup and storage solutions out there that you can choose from that work really well, has great support and very good pricing with trials included.

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